Guide to Tennis Shoulder Pain: Causes, Injuries, Treatment, and Prevention
Injuries are never fun, but knowing how to deal with them might be even less fun. A shoulder injury is something that tends to occur rather frequently among tennis players, more specifically anterior shoulder pain. Many people believe it is due to having weak rotator cuff muscles, and this can actually cause some quite significant issues.
A blog will be about tennis shoulder pain and what causes it including the exercises, rehab treatments, and other kinds of treatments to help with tennis shoulder pain.
Tennis players are at risk of experiencing shoulder injuries. In fact, many pro players go through some degree of shoulder issues at one point or another in their career. Some prominent players with shoulder injuries are Fred Guignon, Andre Agassi, and Rafael Nadal.
What is a tennis shoulder?
Tennis shoulder is a common condition that results from the overuse of the supraspinatus tendon, a muscle, and tendon unit in the shoulder. The supraspinatus tendon attaches to the upper arm bone (humerus) and the scapula (shoulder blade).
This muscle and tendon unit acts to raise your arm up behind your back, rotate your arm outward, and lift objects off the ground. When this muscle is overused or used incorrectly it can become inflamed, causing pain and stiffness.
Tennis players who use their arms to hit a lot of topspin on their forehand side are most often affected by tennis elbow.
Other activities that may cause tennis elbow include typing on a keyboard, using power tools such as drills or paint guns, and swinging a golf club or baseball bat.
In contrast, those who do not use their arm for tennis serve to develop tennis elbow as well.
Symptoms of tennis elbow include pain on the outside of your elbow, pain when you bend your wrist backward towards your forearm, and pain when you press against your biceps muscle.
Some people also experience pain radiating down into their hands as well. Then we know that the tennis shoulder, also known as lateral epicondylitis and tennis elbow, is an overuse injury of the musculature and tendon that attach to the outer edge of the humerus bone.
It’s a common condition in tennis players (hence, the name) and other overhead athletes, including baseball pitchers.
Tennis shoulder is most prevalent among those who play a lot of tennis, but it can also be caused by other activities like golfing or throwing.
It does not occur in every tennis player and seems to be more common among men than women.
What is a tennis shoulder common injury?
Tear and strain of rotator cuff or supraspinatus tendon and the pain results in scooped shoulder and painful shoulder. After a tennis game or hitting a hard surface, you experience shoulder pain with the inability to turn your shoulder. This is called a tennis shoulder injury.
How do tennis shoulder injuries happen?
There are several potential causes of tennis shoulder pain. The first is trauma to the shoulder, which can cause inflammation and pain in the area of the injury.
This can be caused by falls, car accidents, and sports injuries such as dislocating the shoulder or tearing a rotator cuff muscle. The condition is more commonly seen in tennis players and people who regularly perform repetitive arm motions.
Tennis players are at risk for another type of injury called “tennis elbow.” Tennis elbow is an inflammatory condition caused by overuse.
It is characterized by tenderness, weakness, and pain on the outside of the elbow. The pain from the tennis elbow can radiate up into your forearm or wrist.
Tennis elbow is not a true form of arthritis, however, there are similarities between the two types of condition. Both are caused by repetitive motion that puts stress on the tendons in and around your elbow joint.
The repetitive motion creates microscopic tears in your tendons that eventually lead to inflammation and pain.
Some of the other symptoms associated with tennis shoulder pain are:
- The front of the shoulder may become swollen
- There may be pain from the front of the shoulder to the arm
- Pain during activities, sleep and rest
- It hurts when you move something or move your arm and this pain gets worse
Treatment and Therapy of Tennis Shoulder Pain
Tennis is a great way to stay active in the summer months. It allows you to get outside and enjoy the weather while exercising. Unfortunately, it can also lead to tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, which is an inflammation of the tendons on the outside of your elbow.
It can become quite painful, and if left unattended, can take several months to heal. Here are some ways you can treat your tennis elbow:
Elevate Your Elbow: Take frequent breaks from playing tennis by raising your arm above your head. This will help alleviate some of the pressure on the tendons on the outside of your elbow.
Ice It: Use ice packs on your elbow after playing tennis. This will reduce inflammation in the area and speed up recovery time.
Stretch It Out: Stretch out your forearm muscles with a towel or a doorknob behind your back. Bend your hand back towards you and hold for 20 seconds. Repeat 10 times each day until symptoms subside.
Treat Your Tendinitis: Lightly rub over the affected tendon with a tennis ball to help release tension in the tendons that may be causing pain. You can also use other round objects like baseballs or golf balls to
Treatment of tennis shoulder pain is the process of easing and eliminating the pain caused by inflammation of the rotator cuff muscles and tendons.
Treatment is essential because pain inhibits proper functioning, and without proper functioning, tennis players cannot perform at their best. Fortunately, tennis shoulder treatment can often be performed in a clinic or at home.
The tennis elbow is similar to the tennis shoulder in that it is caused by inflammation of the tendons. However, the tennis elbow causes pain near the outside of the elbow joint.
Tennis elbow can affect either one or both arms but tends to affect both equally. Patients who suffer from tennis elbow usually experience pain when gripping objects or lifting items above their head.
Treatment for tennis elbow should include rest and avoiding movements where the pain is experienced.
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Here are some more treatments to get rid of tennis shoulder pain…
Tennis elbow is one of the most common injuries sustained by players of all levels and ages. The pain and tenderness associated with the tennis elbow are caused by inflammation in the tendons that connect the forearm muscles to the elbow. This inflammation can be a result of excessive use or overuse of these muscles and can occur during daily activities such as driving or typing.
- Activity modification to decrease stress on the affected area
- Wearing a brace for protection
- Massage therapy for pain relief
- Using support devices such as straps to relieve pressure on the affected area
- Physical therapy and exercise for flexibility, strength, endurance, and range of motion
- Medication for pain relief
- Surgery for severe cases in which noninvasive techniques have failed
Some Suggested Exercises to Prevent Shoulder Pain
In addition to taking medication and other medical treatments to prevent tennis shoulder pain, you need to do some exercises that will give you a very good price. You can do these exercises before going to the tennis court which will be quite good for your muscles and shoulders.
Chest Stretch is a simple exercise that stretches your chest, shoulders, and arms. It’s good to do after a long day at work or sitting down.
Targets: Chest, shoulders, and arms.
How to: Stand tall with your legs straight and arms by your side. Reach both arms out in front of you to shoulder height, reaching up as far as you can.
Hold for 20-30 seconds, do not let go, then relax a few times and repeat on the other side
Rotator Cuff Stretch
The Rotator Cuff Stretch exercise is one of the most popular exercises to treat shoulder pain.
This stretch is designed to help eliminate shoulder stiffness, improve shoulder muscle flexibility and prevent shoulder injury. This exercise is especially beneficial to people who work in front of computers or those who do a lot of overhead lifting.
Description: Stand with your arms at your sides, bend your right arm to 90 degrees so that your elbow points out to the side, and raise your right hand up above your head. Grab onto the thumb and first finger of your right hand, then pull toward the ceiling until you feel a stretch in the back of your shoulders and upper arm. Keep a slight bend in your elbow so that you don’t hyperextend it. Hold for 20-30 seconds, then relax and repeat on the other side.
Internal Rotation exercise
Internal Rotation exercise is also known as Internal Rotation at the Hip joint. It comprises the movements of the hip joint.
The hip joint is a ball and socket joint. The head of the femur (ball) is seated in the acetabulum (socket). This joint is enclosed by a capsule and strengthened by a group of ligaments. The joint possess very little space between the articulating surfaces and hence it has high mobility but less stability.
Description: The main function of internal rotation is to bring the leg across the body while walking or running. It also helps in turning the body to one side (laterally). Internal Rotation can be performed by placing the foot on a horizontal bar, keeping the back and knee straight, and then rotating the knee inwardly against resistance. It is also effective in improving the functioning of knee joints, hips, and lower back due to increased flexibility, strength, and range of motion throughout these areas.
Internal rotation may be performed with an exercise band or cable machine.
Methods of execution: Internal rotation may be executed using an exercise band or cable machine. The movement should be slow and controlled. Care should be taken not to use jerky movements while executing the exercise because it can cause damage to tendons, muscles
Note: We have mentioned above the benefits and efficacy of various treatments, medicines, and exercises to get rid of tennis shoulder pain. But you must consult a doctor before taking any treatment or medicine
The Beginner’s Guide to Surviving Tennis Shoulder Pain
Tennis shoulder is a painful condition that affects one or both of the tendons that attach to the humerus bone in the shoulder. The pain usually occurs with overhead activities like serving, throwing, lifting, and even sleeping.
Tennis shoulder is a common injury among tennis players and others who participate in overhead sports such as swimming, volleyball, and weight training.
The pain associated with the tennis shoulder is often described as a deep, dull ache that can be severe enough to interfere with sleep.
It is possible for tennis players to prevent tennis shoulder or the development of other injuries by warming up before play, stretching, and working on strength, flexibility, and balance.
Here’s what you need to know about preventing tennis shoulder:
Warming up before playing tennis helps your body prepare for the activity while reducing your risk of injury.
Warming up includes dynamic stretching, which involves moving your muscles through their full range of motion, followed by specific movements that mimic those you’ll use during your sport.
Dynamic stretches are done slowly while holding each stretch for 15 to 20 seconds before moving on to the next one. Over time, you should build up to holding each stretch for 30 seconds.
You should also do 10 minutes of light aerobic activity before playing tennis or doing
Use the tennis rackets that are suggested for beginner players. Usually trying to use a lightweight racket.
Hope you read a great article to relieve your tennis shoulder pain. If you have any questions you can mention them in the comment box. Thanks
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